“FLEX” Your Email Fundraising List

 Jim looked like a little lost pup when he walked into the place. To define him as looking “pathetic” would have been a little too extreme, but the man sure looked like he could use a friend. As you probably already know, I am his friend, so I steered him towards a booth and got him seated.

“Floyder,” he began without any prompting, “are you sure sending out e-mails is a good Internet Marketing idea?”

The question kind of caught me off guard – – not because he thought I would know the answer, but that he would even voice it. My association with Randall Mains and Pathmaker Marketing has allowed me to become familiar with a number of Online Marketing Tools, including the use of Social Internet Marketing, and especially email fundraising. Jim has been using his e-mail list what I thought was quite effectively, and I was therefore surprised that he was questioning its validity now.

“Yes, Jim,” I assured him, “using your e-mail list is the most viable Small Business Marketing Strategy. Why do you ask?”

“Floyder, I just had three people unsubscribe from my list because they said they were getting too many ‘junk’ e-mails from me. I don’t want to offend anyone because of my mailings.”

Pulling out my calculator, I asked Jim a question I already knew the answer to, “How large is your list?”

“About 10,000. Why?”

“Well, if three people unsubscribed, that means you lost .03%, or .0003 of your list. Jim, if you don’t send out any e-mails at all you would lose 250 names through natural attrition rate (aka bounces), because the typical email list will lose 30% of its names per year to bounces, not unsubscriptions. You see,” I went on, “an e-mail list is like a muscle – – if you don’t use it, it will suffer from atrophy. In other words,” I added, “you either use it while you got it or lose it altogether over time.”

“You mean people don’t get upset when they get a lot of e-mails?” he asked, true curiosity heavy in his voice.

“Well, they could of course, but it depends on a couple of things. First of all, how often are you contacting them, and what, exactly, are you sending them?”

“I have been sending out an e-mail about twice a month, and, usually, I am sending out notifications about items I’m running a sale on.”

“Both of those sound reasonable,” I mused. Then, hit with an epiphany, I asked Jim another question.

“Jim, when did you send out your last mailing?

“Day before yesterday. Why?

“Other than the three unsubscribers, have you had any other responses?

            “Yeah – – I had twenty three people buy the sale item on line, and another nine have come in so far and bought the product in person.”

“So,” I said, picking up my handy dandy calculator, “in only two days you have already realized a sales closure rate of .32%. That means, Jim, that your success rate is 107,000 times greater than your unsubscribe rate – – and that’s after only two days!!”

A big smile began to creep across his face. It started in his eyes, and then snuck down to grab the corners of his mouth to stretch that into the unmistakable evidence of the pleasure he was now feeling.

“So losing those three people wasn’t that big of a deal?” he asked, even though it was obvious he knew it wasn’t.

“Not at all. Jim, how many new names are you adding to your list a week?”

“Probably forty or fifty”

“Even if you lose three subscribers every two weeks, and 250 bounces per month, you’re still staying steady.”

The smile got even bigger, and I noticed that “pathetic” was now a long way from the way he looked!

For more help with your email fundraising or email marketing efforts, go here or call 1-623-322-3334.

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